In this collection of 12 essays by famed poet and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson, the reader is exposed to a wide range of thoughts and ideas. Emerson was a thinking man's poet, and he embraced independence, self-reliance, and most of all, nature. In the title essay, he writes about nature in almost mystical terms, and shares with the reader his love of the outdoors and everything in it. Nature was Emerson's church, and he worshipped at its altar on a regular basis. Other essays in this collection include "Self-Reliance," "Character," "Intellect," "Spiritual Laws," "The American Scholar" and others.